06/11/2006

Anglers appeal for river pollution to stop

County Antrim anglers and Friends of the Earth have today accused the government of being “incompetent or incapable” of enforcing the legislation to protect the natural environment.

This follows the pollution of a river, the Six Mile Water, which has been described as one of the best angling rivers in Northern Ireland, and a major tributary, Ballymartin Water.

It is understood that the river is being polluted on a daily basis by silt from a drain at a nearby quarry.

The source of the pollution was prosecuted last August, however since then nothing has been done to prevent further incidents.

Friends of the Earth and the Antrim Angling Association have demanded that the Department of the Environment, take immediate action to stop the pollution.

A spokeswoman for Friends of the Earth, today said that the case “illustrates is an unholy trinity comprising an industrial polluter, an ineffective regulator and a complacent judiciary.”

She added that the DOE Environment and Heritage Service must step in to stop the pollution, and bring those responsible to justice.

A spokesman for the Antrim Angling Association added that around 75% of fish stocks have been wiped out and added that the pollution suffocates both fish and eggs, and stops the fish from breeding.

(EF)

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